Social Media – Release the Inner F@*!wit!

Yep, she be gathering momentum.

Having just made a big fat posting about changing my mind, eating gateau d’humilite, and advocating getting a social media policy (quickly, quickly, before it goes horribly, horribly wrong) if only to control those of your people who will undoubtedly, as sure as a werewolf comes over all bristly roundabout full moon, mutate into dribbly village idiots when confronted with social media –  and I surf directly into this.

Oooop. The fine lads and lasses of the Emergency Department at Swindon’s Great Western Hospital find themselves suspended pending a disciplinary, having decided to play the Lying Down Game (google it, my life’s too short) and post their pictures on Facebook. Seven of them were suspended. You’d have thought, simply according to the law of averages, that one of them would have been bright enough to say ‘hey up, guys – maybe we shouldn’t be doing this’. But they did it anyway.

A fair proportion of the blame lies with the hospital authority. Quite clearly there wasn’t a social media strategy (for strategy, read ‘draconian guideline policy’) in place and quite clearly, no-one had bothered to monitor social media outlets to see what was being said/posted. So you can’t wholly blame the employees – they had a right (I guess) to expect to be protected from themselves.

Now – before anyone points out that I’m being a hypocrite and a two-faced, mealy-mouthed, stance-changer (having made it very clear that I believe social media to be impossible to monitor or regulate) – when I say ‘monitor social media’ what I mean is having a quick look at Facebook and Twitter and searching for the name of your brand, company or organisation.

In this case, it wouldn’t have been too difficult to track down the Secret Swindon Emergency Department Group. 

Actually, on reflection, maybe those employees on suspension deserve everything that’s coming to them.

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Filed under Communications Strategy, Crisis Management, External Communications, Internal Communications, Internal Communications and Engagement, Social Media

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